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WASHINGTON, D.C.— The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) recently announced the award of $28.9 million to 15 industry- and university-led projects and a new $32 million funding opportunity for research that will advance cutting-edge clean hydrogen technology solutions. The funding will support clean hydrogen uses for a more available and affordable fuel for electricity generation, industrial decarbonization, and transportation fuel. Electricity generated from clean hydrogen will help in reaching the Biden-Harris Administration’s goal achieving a net-zero economy by 2050.   

“Clean hydrogen is an incredibly versatile tool for decarbonizing our economy and tackling the climate crisis,” said U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm. “DOE is investing in projects that will help bring down the cost of producing clean hydrogen,  increase its availability as an affordable, low-carbon fuel for power production, and generate good-paying jobs.” 

Hydrogen is a clean fuel that, when combined with oxygen in a fuel cell or burned in a gas turbine, can be used to produce electricity with only water and heat as by-products. Hydrogen can be produced through a variety of low-carbon pathways, including domestic resources like sustainably-sourced biomass or natural gas and waste coal, coupled with carbon capture and storage. This makes it an attractive fuel option for both electricity generation and industrial applications, such as in buildings and manufacturing.  

DOE’s National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL), under the purview of the Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management (FECM), will manage the 15 selected projects, which address the following topics: 

  • Production of low-cost, carbon-neutral hydrogen from sustainable biomass feedstocks.
  • Production of clean hydrogen from blended feedstocks that include biomass, waste coal, waste plastics, and municipal solid wastes, with carbon capture.
  • Front-end engineering design studies to design and implement carbon capture systems that enable the production of clean hydrogen from natural gas. 

A detailed list of the selected projects can be found here

DOE also announced a new $32 million funding opportunity for applications in four areas of interest:

  • Development of technologies to advance clean hydrogen production from sustainable biomass, municipal solid wastes, coal wastes and waste plastics.
  • Further development of existing natural gas to hydrogen processes to bring them closer to commercialization.
  • Performance improvements for leak detection in hydrogen pipelines and transportation infrastructure.
  • Options for safe, long-term subsurface hydrogen storage.  

Read the full funding opportunity announcement here

Since January 2021, FECM has invested nearly $80 million in 46 projects to explore new, clean methods to produce hydrogen and to improve the efficiency of hydrogen-fueled turbines. The selected projects announced today and the additional research to be funded also support DOE’s Hydrogen Shot initiative, which seeks to reduce the cost of clean hydrogen by 80% to $1 per 1 kilogram in 1 decade to grow new, clean hydrogen pathways in the United States. 

FECM funds research, development, demonstration, and deployment projects to decarbonize power generation and industrial production, remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, and mitigate the environmental impacts of fossil fuel production and use. Priority areas of technology work include carbon capture, carbon conversion, carbon dioxide removal, carbon dioxide transport and storage, hydrogen production with carbon management, methane emissions reduction, and critical minerals production. To learn more, visit the FECM website, sign up for FECM news announcements and visit the NETL website